Revista Chapingo. Serie horticultura
versión impresa ISSN 1027-152X
ZEGBE, J. A. y SERNA-PEREZ, A.. Partial rootzone drying improves water productivity of apples in a semi-arid enviroment. Rev. Chapingo Ser.Hortic [online]. 2009, vol.15, n.2, pp. 111-118. ISSN 1027-152X.
The aquifer over exploitation in the central and northern part of Mexico requires efficient strategies in the application, savings, and conservation of water (blue gold) for the sustainability of horticultural crops like apple. So, the objective of this study was to compare the commercial irrigation (CI) with partial rootzone drying (PRD) in relation to the yield and fruit quality at harvest, and water productivity (WP). Emphasis was placed on water productivity, water relationships, tree nutrition, and postharvest performance of fruit. The treatments were: CI as control and PRD. Water productivity was significantly improved by the use of PRD and resulted in a water savings of 2.9 megalitres of water per hectare. Yield, yield components, vegetative growth, fruit size, and fruit quality were not modified by the irrigation treatments. Pruning weight was the lowest in PRD trees. Tree water status, stomatal conductance, and transpiration were lower in PRD trees than in RC trees. Except for calcium and boron, the concentration of the remainder nutrients was similar between treatments. After 18-day in storage, fruit quality was the same between treatments, but fruit water loss tended to increase in PRD fruit. In conclusion, PRD is a water-saving irrigation strategy for the sustainable apple production, mainly for areas where water resource is limited.
Palabras llave : Malus xsylvestris (L.) Mill. var domestica (Borkh.) Mansf; reduced irrigation; water relations; nutrition; preharvest; postharvest.